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Murray Browne
Decatur, Georgia
Writer
Interests: Down & Outbound: A Mass Transit Satire (2016), The Book Shopper: A Life in Review (2009), Understanding Search Engines (1999),
Recent Activity
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Begun in November 2008, the Book Shopper blog has had tweaks in format and content, but has stayed true to its main purpose, a personal outlet about my interest in books and book culture. Originally, it concentrated on the metropolitan Atlanta "literary" scene, but that quickly became a tedious exercise,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 9, 2018 at The Book Shopper
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Allow me to count the ways: One. Building construction obliterates sidewalks for months at a time. Two. The crosswalks near these construction sites have long been erased or painted over by unintelligible, utility company hieroglyphics, which can be interpreted by only a select few. (If a graffiti artist defaced public... Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2018 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Instead of focusing on the best books published in 2017, my tradition is to revisit the best books I read in 2017. To do this I pull out a year's worth of scribbling on notecards that have been repurposed from a variety of sources. These might include promotional postcards from... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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Although we first think of New Orleans as a place of jazz, food, and bacchanalia, my longtime partner Denise and I discovered on a recent trip that the richness of the city includes books as well. As mentioned in the previous posting, we began our preparation for a trip to... Continue reading
Posted Dec 5, 2017 at The Book Shopper
From the director of Percolator, a new film about the Decatur MARTA Station... Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2017 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Writing or reading an essay isn’t the only way to stop and ask yourself who you really are and what your life might mean, but it is one good way. – Jonathan Franzen Admittedly, I haven’t been writing any essays lately (with one exception), but I have been reading some... Continue reading
Posted Nov 19, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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In this photo I am reading a book to my grandson Myrick about librarians. The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu (2017) by Joshua Hammer chronicles the clandestine work of archivists led by Abdel Kader Haidera who rescued over 350,000 manuscripts -- many which were centuries old -- from Islamic extremists who... Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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A brief follow-up from the previous posting: In Philadelphia Last weekend I finally met Paul Dry, the publisher of my earlier book, The Book Shopper. Even though Paul and I have been book friends for 10 years we never had a face-to-face chat. Along with my longtime partner and editor,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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I am in the midst of a book shopping and book promoting tour, which has been somewhat unconventional. Here’s the itinerary of past and future events: Radical Book Fair, Saturday, October 14, Auburn Avenue Research Library, Atlanta The Radical Book Fair gave me an opportunity to see the AARL for... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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I know that motorists are often asked to "Share the Road" with cyclists, and cyclists often ride on sidewalks (which is understandable in some instances, but dangerous to pedestrians), but when drivers insist that we share the sidewalks is when I take it personal. This vodka truck came right at... Continue reading
Posted Oct 15, 2017 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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Street wise pedestrians know that decorative, "fun" crosswalks are badly outnumbered by faded crosswalks, crosswalks covered with utility petroglyphs, and crosswalks that have turned into potholes. Continue reading
Posted Oct 7, 2017 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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October 4, 2017 marks the 62nd anniversary of the Brooklyn Dodgers’ only World Series Championship in the 75 years that they played in Brooklyn. On October 4, 1955, the Dodgers defeated the Yankees 4 games to 3, after numerous losses to the Yankees in 1947, 1949, 1952 and 1953. It’s... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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Here's just a few of the pieces from the Books as Art exhibit at the Decatur (GA) Public Library. About the only thing these pieces have in common is that they are books. The month-long exhibit runs through September 29th: Sconce by Dawn Peterson, of Tybee Island, Georgia Goode's School... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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It’s been awhile since we posted anything from the MARTA BOOK CLUB, Atlanta’s Premier Public Transportation Reading Club, whose only membership requirement is to read something while riding the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority. There are no club dues, nor discussion groups and reading tastes can run the entire spectrum.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 11, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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In a rare public appearance, discounted copies of my book Down & Outbound: A Mass Transit Satire will be available for perusing and sale at the Root City booth #528 at the Decatur Book Festival being held September 2nd and 3rd. This is your opportunity to experience a book about... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2017 at Down & Outbound: The Hub
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In a rare public appearance, discounted copies of my book Down & Outbound: A Mass Transit Satire will be available for perusing and sale at the Root City booth #528 at the Decatur Book Festival being held September 2nd and 3rd. This is your opportunity to experience a book about... Continue reading
Posted Aug 28, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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John Paul Vann, Neil Sheehan, A Bright Shining Lie Continue reading
Posted Aug 20, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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I first read John Hersey last year when a book friend gave me a remaindered copy of Lives of the Novelists: A History of Fiction in 294 Lives (2011). In this book, the critic and scholar John Sutherland chronicles English language fiction dating back to the 17th century. Sutherland’s theme... Continue reading
Posted Aug 15, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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Sometimes the key of fully appreciating a book is choosing the right place and right time to read it. Such is the case with Eva Brann’s book Doublethink/Doubletalk: Naturalizing Second Thoughts & Twofold Speech (2016). Brann, a classics professor at St. John’s College, normally writes the kind of challenging book... Continue reading
Posted Aug 6, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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You don't have to tell me it's been a month since I posted something, Facebook reminds me on a weekly basis that I have been a writing slacker. Of course, I just received my first Believer Magazine in two years, so there is slacking and there is major league goofing... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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Facebook and my longtime blog vendor Typepad recently teamed up to obliterate all my 2017 Facebook postings about The Book Shopper blog. Typepad did sort of a mea culpa about it, but after that who are you gonna call? However, I take some pride that I post new material on... Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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Note: This posting comes courtesy of my longtime partner Denise Casey. She reads much more than I do -- especially about the sciences, but I do share her affection for the octopus and I don't mean as an appetizer. She wrote this overview about octopuses (the correct plural) for her... Continue reading
Posted Jun 25, 2017 at The Book Shopper
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I recently finished reading a collection of memoirs compiled by the London Review of Books called Meeting the Devil (2013). It begins with Hilary Mantel's title piece describing in disturbing candor the details of the author's hospital stay while she recovered from stomach surgery. It is a powerful piece because... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2017 at The Book Shopper
I will be going to the Fall Line Press 50 Artist Talks on Saturday, June 3rd beginning at 3 p.m. My book Down & Outbound: A Mass Satire falls into the gray area of something related to an artist book because of its unusual format and numerous illustrations. Fall Line... Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2017 at The Book Shopper
As I read Rob Walker's article "How to Trick People into Saving Money" in the May, 2017 issue of The Atlantic magazine, I drew a connection to behavioral economist Daniel Eckert's thoughts about saving money and how it relates to saving the environment. Walker writes, "Americans difficulty saving, Daniel Eckert*... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2017 at Down & Outbound: The Hub